By Lisa Michelle
I see you friend. You, with your tired eyes and sullen face. The line between your brows has grown deeper; you wear your scowl like an accessory. You have grown angry, bitter, resentful. So I tell you I am here, my friend. I am down the street, I am a phone call away. Do you want to get tea? Do you want to go on a walk? Do you want me to watch your baby today?
I see you friend. But you do not see me. You do not hear me.
I know you think that because I am not you, I can’t possibly know. And you’re right. But you’re also wrong. Oh, so wrong. Don’t you know I, too, navigate these treacherous seas of motherhood? I, too, get sucked under, wondering when I get to come up for a breath.
Remember last year when I was drowning? But there you were. You and others helped me find my strength to make it to the top to catch a breath.
Motherhood is hard, no matter the path. We are all searching for a sense of stability and peace, all while trying to maintain our relationships, friendships, career, the finances, our freedom and individuality. And so, while I cannot know the degree and darkness of the challenges you face, I do know it’s hard.
You confide in me that you are struggling and you tell me that you are trying. You tell me you are in therapy. You tell me you have put Himalayan salt crystal lamps in all the rooms of your home. You tell me you are eliminating refined sugar, bread, and fruit, among other things. And now you are starving. And those things aren’t helping, are they? What about medication? God forbid I even mention that. But it has been too long like this, my friend. Your stubbornness is hurting you, but you cannot see. And I am worried.
In fact, over time it has gotten worse. You reject almost all social invitations and the slightest things set you off. I wish you would see and feel some light. I wish so hard you would say just one positive thing.
I want to shake you. “Wake up,” I want to yell. But I don’t. Instead when you are ready I will be here. We have gone through so much these past couple of years, but have always had each other for reprieve. Please remember that you can’t do this alone. Remember? That’s what we said in that first year of our babies’ lives when we both struggled. We were so grateful to have each other.
I admit it hurts—being rejected by you, my partner in parenthood. Sometimes you almost have me sold on giving up and leaving you in the dark. But I just can’t. I won’t. So please, look up, look around and listen. Here I am. Down the street or a phone call away.
The support of real friends never truly ends. It keeps going, even through life’s unknowns and challenges. So please don’t forget that, my friend.
Come back, my friend.
I miss you, my friend.
I’ll be here, my friend.
Lisa Michelle is an RN, health educator, writer, and mother of one very busy toddler. Of course, none of that would be possible without the support of her dear friends. She writes and lives in beautiful Utah.
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